Painting Cabinets | Get a Smooth Finish on MDF

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Today, let’s talk about the best practices for painting MDF.

MDF is great. It is cheaper, more machinable and cheaper than wood, which makes it perfect for painted cabinets or trim. But, if you’re painting MDF, you encounter one problem. Anytime you cut an edge, it leaves a fuzzyness. Check out the video above to see what you can do to ensure a smooth finish on MDF.

Things I Used in This Project:

Primers for MDF:

  • Zinsser’s BIN is my favorite because it dries fastest and sands easiest.
  • But I also like Kilz Original and Zinsser Cover Stain. All of these are solvent-based, so cleanup is a pain.
  • Both Zinsser and Kilz have a few versions of water-based stain-blocking primers. They clog sandpaper more than solvent-based products. But I still use them when I want easy cleanup.
  • Instead of primer, some people use water-based polyurethane (such as Minwax Polycrylic) to seal MDF. It dries fast and sands very well. But it’s not really a primer and paint may not adhere to it as well.

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